PUBLIC OPINION > Texting While Walking Should Not Be Banned

Living 2012/05/15 22:00:00
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, 38 states currently outlaw texting while driving. But what about walking? Earlier this week, the media was reporting that Fort Lee, New Jersey, had banned texting while walking, prompting a discussion about the pros and cons of the ban. As it turns out, that wasn't the case -- Fort Lee police were merely tacking on an extra fine for jaywalkers if they're texting while crossing the street. But we wanted to know what the public thinks about a ban on texting while walking.

While many agree that texting while walking can be dangerous, the majority feels a ban is taking it too far. In a car, you're endangering the lives of other people; on the pavement, you're only putting yourself at risk. It's a little morbid, but some respondents joked that the problem would solve itself. One commenter wrote, "In this case we should try to let Darwin's law of natural selection take its course unabated."

Teens Wouldn't Dream of It

Most demographics were in agreement, but the age breakdown had a very clear correlation: Younger voters were almost completely opposed, while older voters were more likely to support the ban. Even then, voters over the age of 65 were only 45% in favor of a ban, so it's still a minority. The variance is probably just because older people are less likely to text while they walk.

Something We Agree On

Finally, a ban we can all agree on. Conservatives and liberals were just a few points off on this! It's not the first time both parties have been in agreement, but rarely does a ban witness bipartisan support -- or, in this case, rejection. Maybe we can all gather around the barbecue next weekend and celebrate this awesome and harmonious event. (Texting will be allowed, but not encouraged.)

Parents Push for It a Little More

Not surprisingly, parents were about twice as likely to support the ban as those who want kids. However, respondents who don't want kids at all were also about twice as likely to support the ban. Presumably, these are the ones who don't like seeing kids roaming the streets with their eyes transfixed on their touchscreens, while the parents are more concerned with their own kids' safety.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our poll about texting while walking. We'd love to hear from you!
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Top Opinion

  • Sweetness 2012/05/16 11:26:14
    You would think people would do this on their own. I almost ran over this woman because she did not stop before crossing the road. I don't think it should be banned.. I think people should use common sense.

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  • BichonPrincess 2013/05/31 02:57:33
    I don't think it should be banned but it drives me up the wall when morons do it. I use a wheelchair (I have MS) and I have had quite a few idiots walk into me while turning corners or people who are so busy on their phones they suddenly stop in the middle of the sidewalk, I can't stop my chair that quickly and I have quite a few close calls.
  • Hedwig13 2013/05/31 02:38:08
    texting while walking is not dangerous. yeah you could run into a few people or a wall. but hey - that's your fault! outlawing this is so stupid it's not funny. just another way for the government to control your every action. now texting while crossing the road is dangerous. but it should not be outlawed. anyone stupid enough to text while crossing the road deserves to get hit by a car IDIOTS
  • Stanley 2013/05/31 02:19:54
    No don't bother. Those that text and walk will eventually remove themselves from the gene pool. Don't need any laws to do that.
  • Hedwig13 2013/04/16 09:54:08
    No it shouldn't be banned. People just need to use their common sense and not text while crossing the road. And if you are texting while walking obviously it's smart to look up every few seconds to see that you're not walking into a wall or a person!
  • xxx 2012/05/22 03:51:54
    Wow. They want to bring in laws for everything. Next the amount of times we breathe will be regulated
  • Hedwig13 xxx 2013/05/31 02:39:00
  • sherie 2012/05/18 03:37:42
    The government can't dictate good sense.....leave this one to Darwin and natural selection ;)
  • Andy 2012/05/17 15:29:54
    NO... soon, talking on the phone while walking will be banned. Then it will be phones on buses, subways, or in common areas.... People need to be Personally Responsible for their actions...;NOT GOVERNMENTAL CONTROL!!
  • Comment... Andy 2012/05/18 07:29:17 (edited)
    That's the thing, if everyone was capable of being "personally responsible" or operated sensibly, they wouldn't need to create laws such as this.
  • Andy Comment... 2012/05/18 15:12:53
    If that is the case...NO CARS, NO PLANES, NO FATTY FOODS... everyone stay home and HIDE!!
  • Hedwig13 Andy 2013/04/16 09:55:17
    Yeah the government is getting ridiculously over-controlling. The government is there to do the bare minimum to protect us and the rest is up to our own common sense
  • Miko Mikomiko 2012/05/17 09:19:43
    Miko Mikomiko
    rules rules rules rules rules
  • Just Jenn for Now 2012/05/17 06:38:03
    Just Jenn for Now
    I personally can't believe even 26% voted yes.

    Seriously, if someone falls into a canal or something, that's their problem.

    The ONLY time I can see it banned is when crossing streets. That or make it ineligible to press charges on the person that hit the "victim" if their face was in a phone.

    Other than that, let the few morons who screw themselves up be, and leave us who know how to multitask like pros and can pay attention to our surroundings while texting alone.

    As I said in the original, just because some of us are "bad apples", don't make the perfectly good ones wear the same leashes.
  • Hedwig13 Just Je... 2013/04/16 09:55:45
    so true
  • cher2 2012/05/17 04:43:02
    We have enough bans..take your chances ! I would not do it because I would get hit by the car that was also texting. Someone has to keep an eye on the roads.
  • CT 2012/05/17 04:17:12
    I don't think it should be banned but that said people need to be careful cause you could get hit by a car or fall and break your leg and its not just u that your endangering it someone around you if your near people.
  • emoanimegirl1000 2012/05/17 04:15:23
    You can text while walking, like a quick text but a long text just stop or look up once in a while. And across roads, cant you wait for like a few seconds?
  • SoD 2012/05/17 02:14:51 (edited)
    "I stand firm in my belief that government ought not mandate virtue in any of its forms, but should rather condemn villainy in all its forms. Anyone who believes otherwise is either an aspiring tyrant or a complaisant slave.

    To mandate a virtuous act is to rob it of its splendor and inspiration.

    I define villainy as the causing of physical or financial harm beyond the scope of one's written or spoken consent."

    -- I. M. Kable

    In short, texting while in motion ought not be banned.
  • selgo451 2012/05/17 02:02:58 (edited)
  • wtw 2012/05/17 01:59:08
    No--it is an abridgement of free speech!
  • Ozymandias 2012/05/17 00:59:10
  • Spider20 2012/05/16 21:33:17 (edited)
    I agree it shouldn't be banned....but when I think of this gal, I can't help but think a permit should be required.....

  • midnigh... Spider20 2012/05/16 23:20:44
    on the scale of 1 to 10 how stupid should you feel video recording with your pant down to your tighs
  • Spider20 midnigh... 2012/05/17 02:46:19 (edited)
    I've been trying for 3 days to add a comment to this question and post a video of that gal falling into the pond.....this was the first time I was able to get my comment to stick, and the only copy of the video I could get to "add" to my comment....I'll try to edit, but SH is acting up so badly, I haven't been able to even answer my "shared" questions for 3 days.....

    added: Hey, it worked....have you been having trouble posting?
  • midnigh... Spider20 2012/05/19 21:40:38
    what does that have to do woth my comment above, i mean you replied to my comment
  • Spider20 midnigh... 2012/05/21 03:14:28
    I was attempting to explain why that particular video got posted by me.....I would have preferred to use one without the guy on the toilet, but after trying to post for 3 days, I took what would work, that being toilet man.....I had intended to go back and edit, use a video without the toilet man, but have had problems all week with SH...which is why I asked if you were having trouble posting...
  • midnigh... Spider20 2012/05/26 18:30:44
    :P i havent had any problems posting.
  • Spider20 midnigh... 2012/05/26 18:37:02
    Thanks for that info....many have had all sorts of problems right around the time I posted my original answer....I couldn't post or reply to posts for almost a week at one point......and couldn't email for several days....complained to SH staff....maybe they fixed the problems.....I haven't had any trouble in the last 4 or 5 days....
  • Michael 2012/05/16 20:57:52
    I guess that means you should ban blind people from walking, too!
  • william keegan 2012/05/16 19:47:57
    william keegan
    While you're at it how about banning chewing gum while walking? Or better still how about just banning walking at all!

    Isn;t the "Nanny State" mentality just about over the limit! Either we are living in a "free" society or not.
  • midnigh... william... 2012/05/26 18:33:43
    whem your chewing gum you do it without really thinking, it doesnt really take away your concentration on where your going. but when you got a message to read in front of your eyes it kinda hard to concentrate on two things. i mean you dont your eyes to chew gum or eyes to walk.
  • william... midnigh... 2012/05/27 16:08:17 (edited)
    william keegan
    If someone thinks its more important to send an apple pie recipe to a friend than pay attention to where he/she is going while walking, is none of my business. Unless that person poses a threat to my well being, I have no right to impose my will on him/her at all. Walking does NOT require the same level of attention that, say, driving an automobile requires. Walking on a busy sidewalk involves some degree of jostling regardless whether anyone is texting or not. If a person texting walks into a wall that's just not my business.

    I occasionally nap while watching TV, my napping interferes with my watching the TV program. Should the state pass a law forbidding napping while watching TV? Come on, get real, we have to allow people the freedom to choose what is best for themselves. If that freedom involves failure to reach objectives, so be it! Imposing restrictions on individual freedom for some supposed “better good” is antithetical to the purposes that this nation was founded upon!
  • Kerri Mackenzie 2012/05/16 18:39:22
    Kerri Mackenzie
    Here we go again... every time someone does something someone else doesn't like or agree with, here come the cries to ban it. While you and I may not like what others do, it's not appropriate to call for a ban. Where does it stop? You can't regulate the foolish or stupid things people do. Over and out.
  • sundance Kerri M... 2012/05/16 22:03:02
    Agreed. Sounds of common sense. They are music......Just a thought...
  • jkistner1 2012/05/16 18:22:54
    Rediculous! I can eat whilst walking, play a game whilst walking, as well as chat on my mobile, read a book, watch a video, etc, but not text. How would a cop know the difference between texting and playing a game, watching from afar?
  • sundance jkistner1 2012/05/16 22:01:43
    When you walk into something.....Just a thought...
  • Rockangel420 2012/05/16 18:13:47
    No texting should not be band from walking as long you pay atntion to what's going around you what's next they going to take our cell phones away NEXT?
  • CODE 11 2012/05/16 17:21:14
    CODE 11
    How about chewing gum, and walking
  • lagrenouille 2012/05/16 17:07:00
    texting while walking isn't that hard, you have to pay more attention to where you're going than you do your phone, thats the only real issue, picking a bad place to begin reading a text is the biggest fail point I deal with when I'm texting and walking
  • JJ 2012/05/16 16:47:49
    I'm not for banning people for texting while walking...How much more insainity is there going to be in this country? I do feel people, when they cross a street and are texting, they should look both ways, no matter if there is a red light, or a hand saying they can cross...because you never know.

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2016/02/11 15:05:37

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